MALMESBURY'S Joe Hughes dedicated his European super-lightweight title to his late grandfather.

One year on from a failed bid against Anthony Yigit, Hughes,27, made no mistake at the second time of asking, dominating Andrea Scarpa to lay claim to the European super-lightweight title in Italy.

Hughes paid tribute to his grandfather who passed away last week, he said: "I would like to dedicate the title to my grandfather Geoff Jackson. He was a World War Two veteran who fought in Burma and he passed away last week."

Hughes put on a boxing masterclass to defeat the Italian, but only received a split-decision verdict, one judge scoring the contest 116-112 to Scarpa, the Brit deservedly taking 118-110 and 116-112 with the other two officials.

He added: "I'm not sure how it was a split-decision, and I'm sorry to all the people who had a bet on me to win unanimously, and I think the bookies should pay out to them to be honest."

Despite having a disability in which his right arm is shorter than his left, Hughes controlled proceedings throughout.

"I can't put it into words, it feels brilliant. I have been boxing for 20 years shouldn't even be here, I should be working in Oxford somewhere.

"I shouldn't be doing a physical thing and now I'm European champion. I was only using one hand, but I scored enough with my jab. My first trainer Tony Stannard said that jab is the number one punch and I proved that today."

Roared on by a strong Malmesbury contingent, Hughes paid tribute to the travelling fans, he added: "I'm not normally a big ticket seller, but they have travelled halfway across Europe for me, which is amazing, I can't ask for more."